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Measure the effects of visual designs

There are numerous approaches to measuring the effects of visual designs. And the nice thing about it: These approaches and procedures are not art, they are the classic craft of a market researcher or user researcher. The craft that you can learn and in which you get better and better by gaining experience. You can show this experience when buying car parts at biltipset.

The approaches, which differ in details, show a similar, methodical approach. People from the target group are interviewed, for example, represented using segmentation or persona approaches.

The process of a visual design test is typically structured in 5-6 phases

  1. The visual design is displayed for approx. 5 seconds.
  2. You will be asked about “Likes & Dislike”.
  3. The design can now be viewed as long as desired by the respondent.
  4. Ratings are then collected. Standardized, tested measuring instruments such as the VisAWI are used. Typical assessment dimensions are:
  • attractiveness
  • colorfulness
  • clarity
  • Craftsmanship
  • novelty
  • stimulation.

5. Finally, the design is shown again. Based on core brand values ​​and the intended design effects, the study participants can select adjectives that describe the design from their point of view.

Well prepared, professionally carried out and analyzed, a standardized design test provides clarity and knowledge in order to make decisions. The latter, however, requires that comparative values ​​are available, either from a benchmarking database or by comparing different design drafts in a test run.

Measuring visual designs in terms of their immediate effects – that’s pretty easy. It is much more difficult to justify the measured effects and make them explainable.

Explain the effects of visual designs

Visual designers have a well-stocked toolbox. Designers consciously select objective design elements in order to evoke the desired subjective assessments in the viewer. They know about the effects of colors, shapes, structures, arrangements, and surfaces. Visual designers know both the laws of design and the basic principles of aesthetics. Equipped with a certain level of professional experience, these are the central principles for creating effective visual designs.

And although this is the case, it has not yet been possible to develop a theory that can predict the aesthetic effects of visual designs. And that despite numerous researches into empirical aesthetics, starting with Gustav Theodor Fechner in the 18th century. Empirical aesthetics still occupies a marginal position today, both in psychology and in the arts.